Amazon to begin offering tours of its massive warehouses

Amazon.com announced it will offer regularly scheduled tours to the public of one of the company’s four Phoenix-area fulfillment centers. Starting May 6, Amazon employees will give tours of the 1 million-square-foot warehouse on the first and third Tuesday of every month. “It’s where we pick, pack and ship our customer orders,” spokeswoman Kelly Cheeseman said Friday. “We’ve never offered tours to the public before.”

Amazon is notoriously private. That’s why it was kind of surprising to see the company open up the doors on several of its giant fulfillment centers, announcing recently that the general public can now take tours at six of the mammoth facilities across the country, including those in California, Indiana and Arizona. (Sorry, Washingtonians, no warehouse tours for you!) The Web page announcing the tours is full of PR-speak, noting that the warehouse facilities are “safer than a department store.” It also touts the company’s hiring of military veterans, as well as programs in which the company gives Kindles to local schools.

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